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  • Author: Guy Gregory Haff x
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Amador García-Ramos, Francisco Luis Pestaña-Melero, Alejandro Pérez-Castilla, Francisco Javier Rojas and Guy Gregory Haff

Purpose: To compare the load–velocity relationship between 4 variants of the bench-press (BP) exercise. Methods: The full load–velocity relationship of 30 men was evaluated by means of an incremental loading test starting at 17 kg and progressing to the individual 1-repetition maximum (1RM) in 4 BP variants: concentric-only BP, concentric-only BP throw (BPT), eccentric-concentric BP, and eccentric-concentric BPT. Results: A strong and fairly linear relationship between mean velocity (MV) and %1RM was observed for the 4 BP variants (r 2 > .96 for pooled data and r 2 > .98 for individual data). The MV associated with each %1RM was significantly higher in the eccentric-concentric technique than in the concentric-only technique. The only significant difference between the BP and BPT variants was the higher MV with the light to moderate loads (20–70%1RM) in the BPT using the concentric-only technique. MV was significantly and positively correlated between the 4 BP variants (r = .44–.76), which suggests that the subjects with higher velocities for each %1RM in 1 BP variant also tend to have higher velocities for each %1RM in the 3 other BP variants. Conclusions: These results highlight the need for obtaining specific equations for each BP variant and the existence of individual load–velocity profiles.

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Amador García-Ramos, Alejandro Torrejón, Belén Feriche, Antonio J. Morales-Artacho, Alejandro Pérez-Castilla, Paulino Padial and Guy Gregory Haff

Purpose: To provide 2 general equations to estimate the maximum possible number of repetitions (XRM) from the mean velocity (MV) of the barbell and the MV associated with a given number of repetitions in reserve, as well as to determine the between-sessions reliability of the MV associated with each XRM. Methods: After determination of the bench-press 1-repetition maximum (1RM; 1.15 ± 0.21 kg/kg body mass), 21 men (age 23.0 ± 2.7 y, body mass 72.7 ± 8.3 kg, body height 1.77 ± 0.07 m) completed 4 sets of as many repetitions as possible against relative loads of 60%1RM, 70%1RM, 80%1RM, and 90%1RM over 2 separate sessions. The different loads were tested in a randomized order with 10 min of rest between them. All repetitions were performed at the maximum intended velocity. Results: Both the general equation to predict the XRM from the fastest MV of the set (CV = 15.8–18.5%) and the general equation to predict MV associated with a given number of repetitions in reserve (CV = 14.6–28.8%) failed to provide data with acceptable between-subjects variability. However, a strong relationship (median r 2 = .984) and acceptable reliability (CV < 10% and ICC > .85) were observed between the fastest MV of the set and the XRM when considering individual data. Conclusions: These results indicate that generalized group equations are not acceptable methods for estimating the XRM–MV relationship or the number of repetitions in reserve. When attempting to estimate the XRM–MV relationship, one must use individualized relationships to objectively estimate the exact number of repetitions that can be performed in a training set.

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Amador García-Ramos, Guy Gregory Haff, Francisco Luis Pestaña-Melero, Alejandro Pérez-Castilla, Francisco Javier Rojas, Carlos Balsalobre-Fernández and Slobodan Jaric

Purpose: This study compared the concurrent validity and reliability of previously proposed generalized group equations for estimating the bench press (BP) 1-repetition maximum (1RM) with the individualized load–velocity relationship modeled with a 2-point method. Methods: Thirty men (BP 1RM relative to body mass: 1.08 [0.18] kg·kg−1) performed 2 incremental loading tests in the concentric-only BP exercise and another 2 in the eccentric–concentric BP exercise to assess their actual 1RM and load–velocity relationships. A high velocity (≈1 m·s−1) and a low velocity (≈0.5 m·s−1) were selected from their load–velocity relationships to estimate the 1RM from generalized group equations and through an individual linear model obtained from the 2 velocities. Results: The directly measured 1RM was highly correlated with all predicted 1RMs (r = .847–.977). The generalized group equations systematically underestimated the actual 1RM when predicted from the concentric-only BP (P < .001; effect size = 0.15–0.94) but overestimated it when predicted from the eccentric–concentric BP (P < .001; effect size = 0.36–0.98). Conversely, a low systematic bias (range: −2.3 to 0.5 kg) and random errors (range: 3.0–3.8 kg), no heteroscedasticity of errors (r 2 = .053–.082), and trivial effect size (range: −0.17 to 0.04) were observed when the prediction was based on the 2-point method. Although all examined methods reported the 1RM with high reliability (coefficient of variation ≤ 5.1%; intraclass correlation coefficient  ≥ .89), the direct method was the most reliable (coefficient of variation < 2.0%; intraclass correlation coefficient ≥ .98). Conclusions: The quick, fatigue-free, and practical 2-point method was able to predict the BP 1RM with high reliability and practically perfect validity, and therefore, the authors recommend its use over generalized group equations.